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No Man Rules Alone

  • If anyone by anychance come by here, take a look at this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rStL7niR7gs and maybe this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ig_qpNfXHIU -Video by CGP Grey

    Just watch the dictatorship and conclusion part and think about Overlord.

    It's a video about ruler's rules and I am thinking: "How does this apply to Ainz?"

    He has bottemless power, decade lasting but still limited treasure and only worhtless insects are capable of a revolt. Most importently: He has few Keys that are absolutly loyal that don't care about rewards and might as well be his very own -flesh- bone.

    So is he... Ruling alone with power? Forever?

    (Also he's eternal/immortal, keep a mind of that)

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    • Well, Mr. DumplingIsNice I've already gotten around to watching both videos and I could say is though Ainz is in a monarch's position due to the form of government, the case is actually closer to a dictatorship.

      With regards to the distribution of wealth and resources being stated in the videos as the prime vested interest motivating key supporters, the very nature of the vast majority of his subjects being generally selfless or without a general desire for anything outside the realms of the domain, it throws a very big wrench into applying the mechanic presented. I mean their loyalties are deeply ingrained in their programed game functions and any further development of ego circulates around their motivation for giving service to the guild as a whole.

      As for the possibility of the betrayal of key supporters, it is something I personally see as an inevitability but may be played out differently by the author. But realisticly, the circumstances of an immortal ruler and generally long-lived or indefinately long lifespans amongst the subordinates would mean that their will be opportunities for a change in anyone's personality or the outlook one would have towards life.

      If you also go to counting external powers as generally incapable of competing with Nazarick's forces, they are a pretty stereotypically powerful nation ruled by a benevolent lord. Many of the possible directions of a real state with these conditions would either be succesful world domination, internal implosion, or isolationism from the rest of the world.

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    • Hi there Mr. CrimsonWarden, it's an honor to have you here. Thank you for your in-depth analysis (As you've always done) and it made me realize just how many different words can be used to describe a topic. O.o

      I am clear that Ainz in a dictatorship and it is not a bright idea to formally apply the mechanic presented in the video to Ainz's state. As you have mentioned, the undeniable loyally of his NPC's plays a significant factor in Ainz's reign. It is a scenario that undoubtly, will never occur in the real world no matter the causes.

      However, that only limits to the NPCs... (Now that I realized)

      Looking more broadly, consider Ainz's vassals in the new world. They are defiantly not absolutely loyal to Aniz as if they were programmed like the NPCs. Most of them are in a exchange of value/trading relationship with Aniz (Somewhat force upon though. Like the Dwarf Kingdom and the Baharuth Empire). While some individuals are owning in favor of Ainz (Somewhat manipulated upon though. Like Gondo and Nfirea). Basicly, as a powerful figure and nation, these supporters in the new world is submitted through either force or manipulation. With the best example being the lizard man village.

      Throughout this 'acquirement' of 'vassals' or in this case, just 'supporters', their use for Aniz was just to be experimented on, to gather infomation of the new world, and to lay down a foundation for their long term residence in this new world. Although the main reason for acquiring these vassals was due to Ainz's alertness for possible rival forces, but these vassals he acquired are in no way his key supporters even outside of the Great Tomb of Nazarick.

      And now here comes the good part: Aniz still obeys/follows the general rule of a ruler/leader outside of Nazarick. This is no surprise as he is a ruler in status for his own kingdom outside of Nazarick. But he still treats these minor and easily dominated supporters as key supporters. He gives out rewards appropriately to maintain their loyalty even though he don't need to (Such as the armor for Zaryusu and the shortsword for Pluton. Which are all unessery for any goals but to attempt gain loyalty).

      This just shows how Overlord has a deep relationship with structure of power! It was well set up by the author, that the main character must be a working member of society. And it has shown many times (Referring to the idea of networking and his experience as a corporate slave) that Ainz has the exact knowledge of working in a structure of power. This is so that the social aspect and the political aspect of the story may be implemented without breaking the character. Outside of its power fantasy, Overlord might well also be a outtake of a idealistic reign. Only to be carried out by Aniz who still has the mind of a regular human. This flaw of a human mind brings texture to the story, a ideal/perfect reign with an almost but still imperfect ruler.

      I apologize that I wrote this response like an terrible essay (Went overboard).

      But lastly, here's an question that might be easily answered: "As Aniz does not have the restrictions of key supporters, control of power, and the fear of death. Does that mean that he is able to freely create and maintain his utopia?"

      This question has been raised by Aniz though, but I can't find the phrase. Anyhow, the author is eventually going to give us the answer towards the end of the story.

      (He is the power and death itself)

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    • I understand. If we move to considering the individuals and communities outside of Nazarick, a different story is to be expected.

      For Carne Village, there is generally no problem in the long run and you can expect firm loyalty for at least the generation after Enri's and Nfirea's. The situation in E-Rantel is a bit more delicate but the last hints in Vol 11 do show signs of a thawing in the sentiments of the residents.

      For the Dwarves in Carne, no question of their loyalty for at least the end of the lives of the youngest smiths. They were given an ideal environment to express their trade and can be commissioned to other works to keep them busy and loyal. As for the dwarven kingdom as a whole, there is no problem due to the debt of gratitude Ainz afflicted on them in retaking their capital and a mutually beneficial relationship in arms trade and smithworks is already a given. The few dissenting elders will barely impact the current state of affairs unless a new development in smithcraft or magecraft is made on their front.

      For the Empire, Jircniv's plans and conspiracies will inevitably crumble and follow that trend. The core governing body, and a number of their core military leaders have already been shaken to their core and are effectively impotent in creating a counter towards Nazarick's military might. Even their current level of technological development is vastly inferior before the loss of Fluder from their ranks.

      For the Kingdom, their as good as subjugated since the Princess changed sides.

      The only nation that I think has a possibility of making a significant impact against Nazarick would be the Agrand Council.

      Finally moving to answer your question, Ainz is can effectively act however he pleases without so much as anyone being able to prevent him from doing so. The only real hindrance to Ainz' plans for a utopia is the his own whims and ideals.

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    • Another thing that interests me is that Aniz 'creates' his supporters.

      Similar to raising one from scratch, but its more about creating alteregos from existing key supporters. Using only his most loyal supporters (The npcs) Ainz created figures such as Momon and Jaldabaoth.

      With Momon, Ainz is beasicly a reverse Batman. The alterego of the Dark Hero, as stated in the story, that his purpose is wholly to transferr the repuation he gains to Aniz later in the future. Now, the person known as 'Momon' is just a display for the citizens to settle and look forward toas a relief.

      With Jaldabaoth, Aniz created an enemy. A fake enemy that is only used to prodive tension to nearby naions and a staged show to be potentially used to support Aniz's reputaion. A big fat opra show with Aniz pulling the strings.

      Essentually, Aniz is directing this show. And here's where my point will come to an end since this show will be shown for the 12th volume. Where Aniz, as the Socerous King will 'act' as the suppose 'hero' to cease Jaldabaoth. Who will be wrecking havoc in the Holy Kingdom. Basicly, Aniz made the forces of Nazarick as a faction that can impact itself as a act. Almost like a triple agent but not actually infiltrating anyone.

      As there is no point speculating about the content of volume 12, I won't go on much further. But thank you for your quality discussion.

      As I love closing with questions to keep people interested: "Will Aniz ever take Jaldabaoth as a vassal (An act) just like Momon? And if yes, what is the purpose of showing a 'possible equal foe' (That Aniz dread about) that he is slowly gaining powerful forces?"

      (That is just a silly question that will most likely result in a thoery rather than a analysis. So please don't bother answering it.)

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    • although these rules apply to human societies like the kingdom or the empire, i'm not sure to what extent they apply to nazarick,

      1st : since Ainz is an undead, he is immortal, and doesnt need a heir or a replacement by the "key" supporters.

      2nd : the key supporters themselves in nazarick are the guardians, be it floor or area guardians, and they are all fanatically loyal to Ainz ooal gown. actually for them serving Ainz is reward for itself and they dont need/want a part of the treasures (like in the video) they even didnt want salaries, they only accepted cuz ainz ordered them to.

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    • Pleiades special translation has begun

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    • Fantastic. Thanks for the infomation.

      Also may someone tell me what happens to a thread like this when there is nothing left to talk about?

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    • It just stays floating around along with the other threads.

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    • Ainz can also create new absolutly loyal keys with the system of mercenary NPC

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    • Rule 0 is the answer.The mehcanics are there,they don't have power.His Key supporters are motivated by the very same thing as him and theyr key supporters do not pass the rule 0 for a revolution.

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    • First, i want to say that the video is a very interesting media and I know that is centered in a ruler whose unique objective is to remain in power at all cost. This are just my two cents.

       

      Now, i have a feeling that, in the video, they only talk from a political perspective. There are, also, economic reasons for certain inversions in social collectives of a democracy.

       

      For example, perhaps you want to give a subside to farmers because you consider that the food they produce is an “strategical good” for your country. In that case, if you don't do something to raise the competitiveness of the local products, their prices could not compete with the food imported from another countries.

       

      That would be an economical reason, though is also true that such an action is made, by a wise ruler who want to retain his position of power, with both reasons in mind.

       

      Also, the bureaucratic walls have economic effects in the country that you should not overlook. It is studies in macroeconomics as “social efficiency” is used to be one of the differences between nations form the “first world” and the ones located in the “third world” when we talk about benefits of financial globalization.

       

      A simple formula to represent this is the following:

       

      q =  A * kq

       

      Where q is the output per worker, A the productivity level and k the capital per worker.

      q is a ponderation (between 0 and 1) of the contribution of capital to production.

       

      Basically speaking, the poor countries have a productivity level (A) lower that the rich ones. The A parameter is considered nowadays as the social efficiently of a country. This will include institutions, public polices and cultural differences in addition to technical development. In the past, it was thought that A only depended on Technological development.

       

      The “principal keys” in a democracy with influence and power should be taken care of, if you truly are a democracy, with a strong system that prevent corruption, so your competitor would not dare to take certain approach in fear to be discovered and lost their possibility to appeal to the population in the elections.

       

      As implied before, that same system would increase your social efficiency and, from a macro economical perspective, your gains form “efficient investment” and productivity due to the financial globalization effect.

       

      I have a feeling that Ainz will really push forward the different market integrations securing certaind commercial routes and introducing innovations for the safety of the transportation of goods and people.

       

      The author of the video seems to be implying that a wise ruler should use corruption as a tool, instead of minimizing its effects. That could be true in an absolute monarchy with nobles whose armies you have no control over, but in a democracy, that “tool” should be minimized. As I said before, there exist and economical reason for this known as “social efficiency”.

       

       Of course, if you don’t want to think about the potential benefits and problems derived from the financial globalization, you can ignore all this under your own responsibility.

       

      The point is that, that you can offer proper rewards to your “keys”/subordinates/employers without corruption. Although everyone needs money, obviously, one such a need is satisfied there are other needs a person have. Even today, we have troubles trying to understand that GDP was specifically designed to represents “economic growth” and not “social welfare”.

       

      Letting this little bit of economic stuff apart, in the Overlord world things are fundamentally different.

       

      Ainz is an immortal ruler. Many, if not all, of his vassals are also immortal. In the eyes of his subjects he is not a “man”, he is a “god”. Even before the medieval monarchy’s, ancient civilizations, like the Mesopotamians, organized around an individual that was believed to have some relationship with god. (Divine Kingship)

       

      Ainz Kingdom act as a dictatorship, and Absolute Monarchy, without dynastical features. I would say that, when he conquers the world, there would exist a “parallel political organization” were all the thing explained in the video would happen. However, would happen to please the Guardians and, in extension, the Overlord. This will increase their opportunities to obtain and administrative seat as some kind of governor.

       

      We also know that Ainz will create, probably, a meritocratic society. Where your merits will be measured for your contribution to the Kingdom and your contribution to the succeed of the endeavors of the King.

       

       One problem that could arise here is the creation of a new “social class system” in the long term if certain families are able to prove their worth in a generational basis. Although, if Ainz can implement an educational system to introduce certain basic values to his “utopian” society that could fight such tendency.

       

      If we see the fundamental problem of “the best dictatorship” versus “the worst democracy” I would say that Ainz represents an eternal variant of the best dictatorship.  However, we don’t really know if a being with the same cognition level as a human can maintain himself “sane” after and “indefinite” amount of time.

       

      Thanks for reading my crazy stuff.

       


      Regards.

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    • Dear A Fandom user 88.1.108.24,

      First of all, I love to read comprehensive discussions. And you my friend have drawn out a good point regarding economic vs political perspective.

      I'm no economic expert so I'll just leave your words alone. But I'll talk a little bit on Overlord's side.

      From what I can interpret, there is an essential good/service that Ainz needs: Information and knowledge. And this is pointed out in the first volume of the novel.

      Potions are a short term consumable that the new world may not have the materials or substitutable materials to create. Thus, Aniz recruited Nifirea to study on his behalf. The same goes with Demiurge’s researches on leather and stuff that I can’t remember.

      From volume 11, it is clear that runesmithing does not exist in YGGDRASIL. As a result, Nazarick has no possession of the skill. Even though Aniz does possess rune equipment, he has no means of creating them through runesmithing (He might still be able to make them through other ways). However, runesmithing in the new world is inferior to any method that Nazarick has to create equipment. And Aniz is only investing into it because he is “interested”. There is no reason he “need” this information. He is just researching it for the sake of knowing (That may potentially contribute to his cause later).

      Other knowledges include experiments on warrior skills using Hamuske, Aniz’s secret study on NPCs and “How to be a responsible boss”. In general, just all information regarding the new and the YGGDRASIL and even the real world.

      Information plays a huge role in the story of Overlord. There is no single volume where, the character Aniz is not attempting to gather information (Heck, there is a sound track for the anime named: “First let’s gather information”). The author is constantly enforcing this idea as Aniz was reminded every volume of more and more knowledge that he need to consider obtaining.

      The true “Treasure” or “Power” Aniz owns is not the physical gold and equipment or the abilities he has. But the knowledge of them and the methods of creating/learning them.

      “Knowledge is Power” They say.

      They say that no man rules alone because one man cannot have all that knowledge by himself. Or can they?

      In a sense, Aniz is ruling alone. His subordinate’s will is basically his will and he has the freedom as dictator with no concern of his followers. But in another sense, he is not. Even though he is all mighty and has the power by his side, he still has individuals that attempts to carry out his will. Demiurge and Albedo are the two most trusted individuals that tend to carry out Aniz’s will independently.

      When a person truly rules alone, his will must be passed to his subjects and the subjects must follow. However, mistranslations between rulers and subordinate always occur.

      I don’t need to do much explaining if everyone here read the novel at least once but we all know the relationship these two have with Aniz. When Aniz is tired with ruling a whole organization, he often leaves these two in charge. Demiurge is a bit too intelligent and often overestimates Aniz’s will. This diverges from Aniz’s initial will and thus, Aniz does not completely rule Demiurge.

      Albedo’s case is over commitment. She does Aniz’s will well but tends to be overprotective/loyal to the point of unintentionally going against Aniz’s will (This can be seen on every NPC such as Narberal, Cocytus and Sebas as shown with their struggle in obeying Aniz due to their nature) . Albedo… She formed a team behind Aniz to hunt down other supreme beings that Aniz treasures and tries to find. Even if it is for the good of Ainz, she has gone against his will and thus, Aniz does not completely rule Albedo.

      If Aniz has the knowledge of all of his follower’s status and mindset constantly, he has the absolute authority to correct them. But he doesn’t because in the end, he does not have all that knowledge. This lack of knowledge, especially in the beginning has struck hard during volume 3 where Shalltear was mind controlled. She being mindcontroled is a direct metaphor for Aniz losing his rule over her. Hence, why he (The author defined his character’s idea of.) seeks knowledge and information constantly.

      In fact, all NPC and new world residents influences Aniz’s decisions since his decisions must not only benefits him, but his followers too. A ruler must rule something. Without people to rule, a ruler only rules himself. That is when a man truly rules alone. As a ruler must rule something, the people will not always follow correctly, even if they are machines. (NPCs with no will. Aniz’s first experience with a deathknight sums up this perfectly: “Huh? What’s the point of a defensive monster leaving the person he’s supposed to protect?” Even though, that deathknight is carrying out his orders)

      As a result, I conclude that Aniz is NOT ruling Nazarick alone.


      Thanks for everyone who contributed discussions to this thread. Discussions help a person think and I thank everyone for helping me to come to this conclusion. This thread was made just because I had this interesting idea while watching a Youtube video and ended up as an interesting question. Feel free to say anything else or rebut my claim but either way, I now have an answer for myself.

      Also, if you can’t judge from my terrible writing, as a student I am constantly made to find ideas and author’s purpose in writing and films for some reason. Usually, it is for titles I don’t care about but with Overlord, I just enjoy looking for Maruyama Kugane’s writing techniques. Even though it was translated, the message still comes through. And I hope to see more people discovering these ideas/techniques.

      (Special thanks to A Fandom user 88.1.108.24 for causing me to finally write an answer. And CrimsonWarden for his first notice and in general: Just fantastic discussions man~. Love ya.)

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